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  • Thomas Rose

See Me Now: JELEEL's reflective single introduces an interesting new style

Jeleel (styled as JELEEL!) is known for a lot of things: his positive attitude and fitness content, his crazy stunts and crowd-surfing, and his high-energy, rage-inspired hits like "DIVE IN"! and "SHOTS!," the former of which went absolutely viral. He mainly uses singles, with his 'debut album' REAL RAW released in 2023 to middle-of-the-road reviews.


Jaleel has experimented with a variety of styles; his first projects, like "DIVE IN!" in 2019, took inspiration from both hip-hop and the (at the time) emerging genre of rage, pioneered by a mixture of trap and high, sharp synth that albums like Playboi Carti's Die Lit would perfect. As Jeleel's career went on, he also took inspiration from more traditional genres, with songs like 2023's "TAMALE!" creating a unique blend that Jeleel would call 'Dancehall Rage.' Songs like "WAHALA!" added Afrobeats into the mix as well, which would culminate in the aforementioned single "See Me Now" (stylized as SEE ME NOW!).


In October of 2023, Jeleel survived a freak accident, falling nearly 40 feet during a failed stunt in Anaheim, California; this inspired him to write "SEE ME NOW!," which was released on Friday and is of a noticeably lower intensity compared to most of his work. The instrumental is slower and somber, with the lyrics conveying less of the pride that Jeleel is known for and more of a reflective tone. It's not a sad song, per se, but a thoughtful one; this care can be seen in the mix of genres present, with Jeleel opting for far less Rage and far more Afrobeat inspiration. The song is one of his better releases since REAL RAW, and though it is meant to be unique, it's a very interesting blend that I hope is explored more with later releases.

Jeleel is performing at Rolling Loud in California this year, so maybe we'll see a live performance of this song there; until then, we'll have to wait for his next genre-defying project.

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